Teaching narrative counselling as a transformative practice: A pilot study investigating whether student learning is akin to client experiences

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Authors
Lewis, Dorothea
Gremillion, Helen
Cheshire, Aileen
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Date
2010
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Other
Ngā Upoko Tukutuku (Māori subject headings)
Keyword
narrative therapy
professional practice
learning
positioning theory
Citation
Lewis, D., Gremillion, H., & Cheshire, A. (2010). Teaching narrative counselling as a transformative practice: A pilot study investigating whether student learning is akin to client experiences [unpublished Unitec Research Committee Research Report].
Abstract
The aims and objectives of this pilot project are to 1) develop best practices in the teaching of narrative work; 2) provide a unique and powerful lens for understanding the effectiveness of narrative therapy; and 3) identify intersections between teaching and professional practice in this field. Students in the 2009 PGDip Counselling course at Unitec were interviewed about their positive learning experiences to determine whether these experiences are akin to extant client accounts of successful therapeutic work. Similarities between these two sets of experiences would allow research on teaching practice in this field to inform understandings of effective narrative work. The researchers found that there are indeed significant similarities between these two sets of experiences. Specifically both the teaching and the practicing of successful narrative ideas entail 1) decentring “expert” knowledge; 2) centering the agency of learners (students and clients); and 3) the creation of reflective, interactive, and dialogical space. Positioning theory has emerged as a useful set of ideas for capturing these conclusions, which speak to aim/objectives #2 and #3. Aim/objective 1 will follow from publication and further research.
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Dorothea Lewis, Helen Gremillion and Aileen Cheshire
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